Recent Examples of GBA Intervention on Key Planning Issues:
GBA Weighs in on the Planning Application Process
Bill 109, More Homes for Everyone Act, 2022 and now Bill 23, More Homes Built Faster Act, 2022 require all municipalities to make sure they have the optimum processes in place to address planning applications. GBA’s primary concern is that development applications of any kind, including the lifting of holds, are processed in such a way that all efforts are made to ensure environmental protections are fully maintained on the lot or island in question.
Please see this GBA letter to the Township of Georgian Bay (TGB) in support of a detailed submission from a Cognashene member who sits on TGB’s planning committee. Although these letters address TGB matters, the issues are relevant to all 5 coastal municipalities where GBA members reside.
An example of why following the correct process is so important occurred in 2022. In this case the Ontario Land Tribunal confirmed that all environmental studies must be done at the planning application stage, not left to the last minute as a condition of site plan approval. See here for the full details.
Other examples of projects where GBA has intervened can be found here.
Local Planning Issues
Local planning issues are the purview of local associations and GBA will only become involved in the following circumstances:
- A specific request from at least one GBA member association to intervene;
- The proposed development or issue could create a precedent that GBA deems poses a significant environmental threat that has GB-wide implications.
With the mounting development pressures, particularly in the southern end of the Bay, nearer and therefore more accessible to the GTA, calls for GBA intervention and action are increasing.
What is GBA doing?
- Where intervention is called for, GBA will first review available information on the development project or issue to identify the environmental protection concerns.
- GBA will then work together with our affected association(s) and other organizations as applicable to advocate to the municipality, and/or Ontario/Federal government agencies, as applicable, to minimize or eliminate potential environmental impacts.
- Where necessary expert consultancy support (legal, planning, scientific, engineering etc.) will be applied. Major third party costs will require a special fund raise.
What can you do?
- Join your local association, if you have not already done so, and get involved – i.e. join your association’s planning committee.
- Participate in any letter writing campaign that your local association and/or GBA launches.
- Consider providing funds to ensure environmental protection of your neighbourhood where this is needed.